Digesting the Digits – 2023 ‘record year’ for ransomware attacks

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Number crunching is a key component of the payment industry, with digits scattered across the sector’s key stories. 

Each week, Payment Expert digests these digits and brings an overview of the past payments week in numbers. This edition focuses on Visa’s latest report on fraud threats.

Visa highlights 62% rise in 2023 ransomware attacks

As part of its latest report on financial threats, Visa has highlighted that 2023 was a record year in terms of ransomware attacks compared to previous periods. 

In March, a total of 460 ransomware attacks were reported – a 91% increase from February and a spike of 62% when looking at figures from March 2022.  

On the upside, the card giant has managed to block some $30bn from reaching criminals between January and June 2023 – a testimony of Visa taking advantage of advanced crime fighting technologies, the company stated. 

Visa marks 2023 as record year for ransomware attacks

Dutch operators investigated amid 15% YoY expected market increase

Dutch operators have been placed under investigation by the country’s gambling authority, Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), on reports of cashback bonus misuse. 

While the use of cashback bonuses can be seen often in other states, the Netherlands has banned it by law. However, reports of operators breaching the legal framework have been submitted to the country’s gambling watchdog, leading to a widespread investigation. 

This comes amid KSA’s expectations of a 15% YoY increase in licensed operators by the end of the year since the Dutch online gambling market launched back in 2021.

KSA launches probe into alleged cashback bonus ban breach

HSBC backs £3,000 cash prize competition for esports startups

With esports continuously taking the world by storm, UK financial institution HSBC has made a notable move into the sector by backing media and events company Esports Insider and its London-based competition ‘The Clutch’. 

Through the investment, various esports startups will be able to showcase their pitches for a chance to win £3,000 in cash to fuel the next step of their business journey. 

HSBC will also come forward with two judges for this year’s competition at ESI London on October 19th.

HSBC UK backs Esports insider’s The Clutch

utu’s newly-found success worth $33m

In this edition of the StartUp Sessions, Asad Jumabhoy – who is the co-founder and CEO of startup utu – takes us through what it means to be a successful company and what it takes to raise $33m as a fintech startup in the current economic climate. 

“Having barely launched in the market and having to come through a major refinance of the company was one of the most difficult things to do – it was a question of survival,” Jumabhoy writes for Payment Expert. 

StartUp Sessions – utu: ‘M&A as a young company was a very interesting experience’

Zopa secures £75m in funding

In the latest UK fintech success story, digital bank Zopa has attracted £75m in funding to fuel its expansion strategy as it looks to meet shifting customer demands. 

Some of the firm’s focus falls on highly-sought services such as BNPL and credit lending, savings management, as well as card balance transfers for improved settlements. 

Jaidev Janardana, CEO of Zopa Bank, said: “We are happy to have investors who share our excitement at the opportunity to serve more customers across more product categories as we get even closer to reaching full-year profitability in 2023 for the first time.”

Zopa’s new £75m fund to fuel banking ambitions